The Dental Health Body-Mouth Connection

Posted on: 8 October 2019

Most people pay far too much attention to the way their smiles affect their self-confidence and appearance and not nearly enough to the overall way oral health affects the body in general. Your mouth and gums and their health can affect nearly every system in the body and particularly your cardiovascular health. Read on to find out more.

Heart Disease and Oral Health

It's the number one killer of both men and women, so preventing heart disease should be on everyone's to-do list. While the foods you eat, the genes you inherit, how much exercise you get, and other health conditions can cause you to be more vulnerable to heart disease, your oral health also plays a surprising role. When your oral health is compromised, your heart health can be too, and it's all related to gum disease.

Inflammation Can Cause Problems

When your mouth is infected, it can create a number of problems and act as a domino effect on your general oral and overall health status. Bacteria is the enemy and the cause of a lot of oral health disorders, from cavities to gum disease. Bacteria naturally exists everywhere in your body, but it's the way bacteria is managed that is the key to eliminating this issue. Brushing, flossing, professional cleanings, and even your saliva production affect the way bacteria grows and thrives in oral spaces. Unfortunately, it's all too easy for bacteria to invade tiny openings in teeth and gum areas and set up shop in places you can no longer reach with your brush.

Inflammation Can Travel

When bacteria enter your gums, it also can enter your bloodstream. This can create not just a dangerous medical condition but can damage your heart as well. As the bacteria travels through your heart via your bloodstream, scientists theorize that it attracts and attaches to fat plaque and goes on to form blockages. Unfortunately, clots and the thickening of the coronary arterial walls can contribute to heart disease and heart attacks.

Testing For Inflammation

C-reactive protein levels in your blood may indicate inflammation. These proteins are often elevated in patients who have been diagnosed with heart disease and can follow inflammatory gum disease occurrences. If you have been diagnosed with heart disease, it's important to let your dentist know about it at your next visit. Keeping your mouth healthy can make your entire body healthy, and doing so is as easy as following the age-old advice of keeping your mouth clean and seeing your dentist on a regular schedule.

For a dental cleaning, contact a dentist in your area.